I really need to focus on things that I like about myself. I think that if I put a decent amount of work into it, I can really convince me to like myself as much as I like anyone else. However, while I wouldn't use the word "modest" to describe myself, I don't particularly like to list off my good qualities (awesome as they may be), either. There's a fine line to walk between love and hate, as I've recently discovered with the recent episode with Former Bestie (who I'm considering apologizing to, but that's something to discuss later). I think that when you love someone (or something), it's very easy to convert that love to hate when something happens that upsets you greatly. I also think that someone grounded would know better than to allow themselves to be sucked in by such a fervent emotion. I am one such person - I feel an emotion and I let it sweep me away with it until it has changed my mood entirely. I have put a freaking LOT of work into not allowing my emotions to seize my entire being and charge off with it, so I know when to stop and take a good look at the direction my emotions are going, and while I definitely do not love myself to the extent that I should, I no longer hate myself! And if I'm going to be the one spending all this time with me, then I should really enjoy my company, no?
-I smile a lot. When I'm driving, when I'm shopping, when I'm working, when I'm playing soccer, when I'm cooking, when I'm playing with Phoenix. I do this mostly on purpose, and especially when I'm interacting with strangers, because I have come to find that if I'm being pleasant and helpful instead of begrudging and crabby, I have a better chance of getting the outcome I'd prefer. I'm super nice to people on the phone - if I'm asking a billing question or trying to figure out why I've been screwed out of something (most recently, $50 was deducted from my bank account without my authorization to make a student loan payment on a loan that had been consolidated - when I asked them to refund that payment, instead of sending it to me, they sent it to the company with which I had consolidated my loans as a payment on the loan. I was furious.) I try to ask constructive questions instead of being demanding and insulting as the person I am talking to is not the person who caused the problem in the first place. Anyway, the main point is that I'm cordial and polite and as nice as I can possibly be to strangers and/or customer service reps. I really like that about myself.
-I'm really, super organized. Even if my bedroom is messy, I still know where I can find anything. I rarely lose things like my wallet or my car keys or my sunglasses. When I set something down, I remember exactly where I put it and in what position I left it. I guess you could call this being acutely observant, which I am as well. I notice things that others tend to be unaware of. This serves two purposes - I can tell people something about myself without actually bragging that I remember where they left something (which is usually pleasantly surprising to them), and I can be more helpful to myself and others by being aware of something they were not. I pride myself on this quality because I'd like to think that it will help me pursue a career in forensics, where observations are often the key to solving a crime.
- I'm extremely intelligent. This includes soaking up information as well as utilizing new information, being interested in and capable of learning new things to which I may not have had previous knowledge or interest, and applying my knowledge to various aspects of life and not just academia. Also, I write pretty well. Despite my lack of interest in English and "Language Arts" in school, I've been able to pick up and retain all kinds of information with regards to the proper usage of the English language to a point of near-mastery. While math is not one of my strong points, I can use the finer points of physics to describe why traffic jams happen and I can come up with ideas both coherently and creatively. My intelligence is well-rounded, and I have fountains of knowledge in many different areas, both fact and comprehensive. I think my intelligence also allows me to see things from several different perspectives instead of being blindly lead by my one measly point of view of the world.
- I'm ridiculously honest. I'll be the first person to admit when I've made a mistake, or when I think I've done something wrong. I ditched school a month after I'd gotten my drivers license to go see a band play an acoustic session at the Hard Rock Cafe in Denver, and when I got home, I told my parents about it before they got the phone call from the school notifying them of my absence. When I found out that my sister's husband had in fact gone over to my friend's house and beaten the snot out of him after a party I had, I told the police about it even though my brother-in-law was going to be charged with assault because of it. It didn't matter that I may have had moral obligations to my sister or loyalty to my family, I wanted to do what was right by the law and by my own conscience. I've discovered that when you can admit that you've done something wrong to someone, they tend to have a greater respect for you and your ability to take the fault for something. Also, lying is hard! When you lie about something, you have to remember all the details of the lie, and be constantly on your toes trying to come up with new explanations for the lie, and it's just much, much easier to tell the truth, even if you think you might look bad because of it. When it comes down to it, I'd much rather face the consequences of doing something wrong than have to worry about covering up for it.
- I can be really funny. Whether it's by means of absurdity, dry sarcasm, or witty empathy, I like making people laugh. It's a great way to break tension, and laughter is a great connector of people. I deeply admire anyone who makes others laugh for a living because it is so necessary and so difficult. I've been able to break a few people's hard exteriors with some well-timed humor and been the better for it. Humor is a great way to make friends and bridge gaps with people you don't know.
That's only a start, but I'm exhausted, so it's off to bed and tomorrow I have off. Thank the lord.